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Russia, Libya sign warship contract worth up to $200 mln

RIA Novosti

10/03/2009 15:07 MOSCOW, March 10 (RIA Novosti) - Libya has signed with Russia a contract worth up to an estimated $200 million to buy three missile boats, a Russian military journal reported on Tuesday.

A contract with Vietnam for the Project 12418 Molniya missile attack boats valued the vessels at $45 million apiece without weapons, so the Libyan contract could be worth a minimum $150 million, and as much as $200 million with arms and spare parts, said Mikhail Barabanov, science editor of the Eksport Vooruzheny (Arms Export) journal.

Russian-Libyan military cooperation was unfrozen when then-President Vladimir Putin visited Tripoli last April, with relations further strengthened by Muammar Gaddafi's subsequent visit to Moscow.

During Putin's visit, the two countries signed a deal to write off $4.6 billion of Libya's debt in exchange for a host of new deals, including $2 billion in arms agreements.

The Molniya contract was awarded to the Rybinsk-based Vympel shipyard.

No further details are currently available on the deal.


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